Northern School Notebook: Jan. 12

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Promising student-writers awarded fellowships

Several local students were awarded Young Emerging Author fellowships from The Telling Room in Portland.

Olivia Peelen, a senior at Falmouth High School, will be writing the Telling Room’s first mystery, in the form of a novella. “About the Bones” is the story of Elliot Collins, a devoted, headstrong 17-year-old who is forced to re-evaluate his relationships with his friends and his home after the bodies of children not native to his town are found. Collins does not understand how the people of Hulls Cove are not bothered by the murders, and takes it upon himself to discover who the kids were and what happened to them.

A senior at Stanford University’s Online High School, Aidan Trotter, of Freeport, is writing a science fiction thriller about personality traits. Last spring Trotter gave a a reading of his short story on which his novel will be based at the Scholastic Awards ceremony at the University of Southern Maine. He won a Gold Key for his submission and was selected as an American Voices nominee.

Baxter Academy junior Oliver Curtis will be writing and sketching a cookbook of invasive species.  The book will be packed with scientific information, but will also include a touch of humor. Curtis has his commercial green crab fisherman’s license, and he and his mother are testing recipes for Green Crab, Japanese Knotweed, and other invasives in their kitchen.

In addition, Mary McColley, a senior at Marshwood High School in South Berwick, will be putting together a book of poetry and poetic prose during her fellowship.

According to The Telling Room website, Young Emerging Author fellowship is a writing and publishing program that offers students an opportunity to plan, write, edit, design and publish their own books in a single year. In weekly sessions at The Telling Room, fellows work collaboratively, as well as independently with professionals in the writing and publishing industries, including authors, editors, agents, designers and publishers.

The year is divided into four parts. First, fellows engage in an intensive writing workshop to hone their book ideas and shape the arcs of their books. They then subject their work to peer editing and one-on-one sessions with individual writing coaches. In the spring, the fellows begin an immersion in pre-publication production, including design and marketing. Finally, the book s are launched, with public readings, events and book tours.

The YEA fellowship is a free program open to applicants ages 12-18. The selected cohort of YEA fellows meets for the first time in the fall, and continues to meet weekly through their book launches and events the following summer.

Greeley student a semifinalist for scholarship

Maggie Nolan, a senior at Greely High School in Cumberland, has been named a semifinalist in  the 2017 class of the Coca-Cola Scholars Program.

Nolan ranks with approximately 1,900 high school seniors who are in the running for 150 college scholarships worth $20,000 each. The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation received nearly 86,000 applications this year.

Students are selected to advance to this next phase based on academic excellence, leadership and service demonstrated in school and community activities.

The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation was created in 1986 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Coca-Cola. The class of 2017 Coca-Cola Scholars will mark the 29th consecutive year that the Foundation has awarded scholarships.

Mary McColley, Olivia Peelen, Aidan Trotter and Oliver Curtis received Young Emerging Authors fellowships from the Telling Room in Portland this fall.